Iquitos (Peru) to Leticia (Colombia) and continue to Bogota

Overview Compare Ferry Slow Boat Flight

COVID-19 UPDATE: Due to the current pandemic, availability and border restrictions change from month to month. We strive to keep everything up-to-date, but unfortunately, this is not always possible. We recommend contacting a travel agent or accommodation in Santa Rosa to inform you about the most up-to-date info. Also, see the US Embassy website for Peru for the latest updates on travel restrictions.

How to get from Iquitos (Peru) to Leticia (Colombia) and continue to Bogota

Leticia is the capital of Colombia’s Amazonian region. It is a small city, but thankfully it still has an airport to keep it connected to the rest of Colombia because there are no proper roads into the Amazon.

Although Leticia doesn’t have as much appeal as other Colombian cities, it is a common stop if you are travelling from Peru or Brazil and want to connect with other towns like Puerto Nariño. The city also gives you the chance to visit some of the local indigenous communities or you can simply use the city to fly to Bogota and continue your journey through Colombia.

Update thanks to readers’ contribution: The border between Santa Rosa and Leticia is open again. You can take the Amazonas fast ferry from Iquitos to Santa Rosa, which departs at 17:00 and takes 16-18 hours. To get your exit stamp, go to the immigration office, which is open from 08:00-17:00, daily. Wifi and 3G/4G are terrible in Leticia, so make sure to prebook your flights. Many thanks for all contributions and please share your experience in a comment if you have anything to add.

2 ways to get from Iquitos to Leticia

The distance from Iquitos to Leticia is 372 km (231 miles). Like in all the Amazonian regions, the main way of transportation and communication is the river, therefore, the only way to travel between them is by boat.

Transport ModeDurationCostsAvailability
Fast Ferry16-18 hours253 Soles ($66)Read article for more info
Slow Boat*3 days100 Soles ($28)Read article for more info
*COVID-19 UPDATE: The last time we checked (November 2022), the slow boat option is unavailable. We’ll update the page once we confirm the availability of the slow boat.

There are two types of ferries operating from Iquitos to Leticia: a fast ferry that lasts around 16-18 hours and a slow boat that takes about 3 days. Both will drop you at Santa Rosa, a Peruvian Island right in front of Leticia. Fares range from 100 to 253 Soles ($28-$66).

The difference between the two is that the fast boat is for passengers only, making only a few stops along the way. The slow boat is a relatively big cargo ship that transports supplies and connects the local communities all along the river.

Only one fast ferry company is available, departing every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, with tickets from 250 Soles ($65).

Pre-pandemic, slow boats used to depart every evening except on Sundays. Fare is 100 Soles ($28).

Important note: We would love to hear any updates about travelling by slow boat in a comment. If you can share your recent experience, we can update this route and help many travellers with this new information.

Because so many travellers decide to continue their travels to Bogota after they have arrived in Leticia, we have devoted a section of this guide to this additional step from Iquitos to Leticia.

Border crossing

Passport control in the areas of Leticia (Colombia), Santa Rosa (Peru) and Tabatinga (Brazil) are just basic checks, which means you can move between the countries pretty easily.

To continue your journey into any of these countries, you must get your passport stamped at each country’s immigration office. An exit stamp is valid for 24 hours until you get the entry stamp.

Note that the Immigration Office in Santa Rosa is open from 08:00 to 17:00. The Amazonas ferry arrives in the morning, so you can directly go to the immigration office to get your passport stamped.

If you’re unable to make it on time, you’ll have to stay one night in Santa Rosa. The next morning, you will be able to get the stamp and continue your journey from Santa Rosa to Leticia.

Santa Rosa’s immigration office is on the main street, just a 3-minute walk from the main dock. In Colombia, the immigration office is located at Leticia’s airport.

Itinerary from Iquitos to Leticia

Iquitos to Leticia by Fast Ferry

Duration: 16-18 hours
Cost: 253 Soles ($66)
Duration: 16-18 hours
Cost: 253 Soles ($66)

When travelling by fast ferry from Iquitos to Leticia, you first have to go to Santa Rosa. The fast ferries go along the Amazon River and connect Iquitos with the border town of Santa Rosa.

Once in Santa Rosa, remember to get your passport stamped to show you’ve exited Peru before crossing the river to Leticia. The immigration office is near the arrival point of ferries.

Step 1: Iquitos to Santa Rosa by Fast Ferry

Duration: 16-18 hours
Cost: 250 Soles ($65)
Duration: 16-18 hours
Cost: 250 Soles ($65)

Pre-pandemic, there are three ferry companies operating on the Iquitos to Santa Rosa Route. Transtur, Golfinho, and Flipper used to depart early in the morning from Tuesday to Sunday.

The last time we checked (November 2022), though, these ferry companies have stopped operating. Only Ferry Amazonas is available to bring passengers from Iquitos to Santa Rosa.

Travel time with this ferry company is 16-18 hours. The boat departs at 17:00, but you need to board as early as 15:00.

Tickets cost 250 Soles ($65), which includes breakfast. Note that you are allowed only two pieces of luggage (up to 30 kg), and every excess kilo costs 4 Soles.

Online booking is not available for Ferry Amazonas. You can only buy your ticket at their office in Pevas 197. The other ferry companies are located along Antonio Raimondi 384.

Ferry schedules from Iquitos to Santa Rosa

Ferry OperatorSchedulesDurationCosts
Ferry Amazonas*Every Monday, Wednesday, Friday,
departing at 17:00
16-18 hours250 Soles ($65)
TransturEvery Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday,
departing at 06:00
12 hours160 Soles ($42)
GolfinhoEvery Wednesday, Friday, Sunday,
departing at 05:30
12 hours160 Soles ($42)
FlipperEvery Wednesday, Friday, Sunday,
departing at 06:00
12 hours160 Soles ($42)
*COVID-19 UPDATE: The last time we checked (November 2022), only Ferry Amazonas is operational. We’ll update the page once we confirm the availability of the other ferries.

Ferries to Santa Rosa depart from Port Enapu, about 10 minutes by taxi from the ticket office in the city centre. You will be dropped at Santa Rosa’s main dock where you then need to follow the only street to the immigration office.

Step 2: Santa Rosa to Leticia

Duration: 10 minutes
Cost: 3 Soles ($1)
Duration: 10 minutes
Cost: 3 Soles ($1)

After you stamp your passport at the immigration office, return to the dock and look for one of the small speedboats. Just say Leticia and they will know where to go. Leticia is right in front of Santa Rosa, so it takes about 10 minutes to cross the river.

The boat will drop you at the dock in front of Leticia’s central market. From there, you can walk for 10 minutes to the main square or take a moto-taxi, a tuk-tuk or a taxi to your hotel.

Remember that you have until the next day to get your entry stamp into Colombia on your passport at Leticia’s airport.

Iquitos to Leticia by Slow Boat*

Duration: Approximately 3 days
Cost: 103 Soles ($29)
Duration: Approximately 3 days
Cost: 103 Soles ($29)

*COVID-19 UPDATE: The last time we checked (November 2022), the slow boat from Iquitos to Santa Rosa is not available. Your only option is to take a fast ferry. We’ll update the page once we confirm the availability of the slow boats on this route.

As with the fast boats, the slow boats also travel from Iquitos to Leticia via Santa Rosa, where you must then cross the river to get to Leticia.

The ferry price is all-inclusive but do not expect any luxury. Also, the travel time is approximate. It depends on the weather and the number or duration of stops on the way.

Step 1: Iquitos to Santa Rosa

Duration: Approximately 3 days
Cost: 100 Soles ($28)
Duration: Approximately 3 days
Cost: 100 Soles ($28)

To travel from Iquitos to Santa Rosa, you must first buy your ticket on the same day of departure at the ticket office in Port Enapu. Boats depart from this port every day at 18:00, except for Sundays.

Note that you must bring your own hammock and ropes to hang it, as well as a container for serving your food (a plate or a tupperware) and your own cutlery. All of this can be bought in Iquitos for a low cost.

The menu aboard can be repetitive and not abundant, so it is recommended to pack some snacks and fruits. You must also bring a good water supply, mosquito repellent and toilet paper.

The boat makes around 20 stops along the way, with some stops lasting several hours. This means you get the chance to buy some food and water on the way too.

These ships use the lower decks to carry all sorts of merchandise and the upper decks are for passengers. You’ll need to choose the spot you want and hang your hammock, which will be your ‘seat’ for the next few days.

The ship has power outlets, but you’ll have to share them with the rest of the passengers. Also, try not to leave your stuff unattended, especially valuables and electronics. You can’t guarantee it will be there when you get back.

You will be dropped at Santa Rosa’s main dock where you can follow the only street to the immigration office.

Step 2: Santa Rosa to Leticia

Duration: 10 minutes
Cost: 3 Soles ($1)
Duration: 10 minutes
Cost: 3 Soles ($1)

After you stamp your passport at the immigration office, return to the dock and look for one of the small speedboats. Just say Leticia and they will know where to go. Leticia is right in front of Santa Rosa, so it takes about 10 minutes to cross the river.

The boat will drop you at the dock in front of Leticia’s central market. From there, you can walk for 10 minutes to the main square or take a moto-taxi, a tuk-tuk or a taxi to your hotel.

Remember that you have until the next day to get your entry stamp into Colombia on your passport at Leticia’s airport.

Travelling from Leticia to Bogota by Flight

Duration: 2 hours
Cost: 230,000 COP ($48)
Duration: 2 hours
Cost: 230,000 COP ($48)

After you arrive in Leticia, you may want to continue your journey further into Colombia. Leticia is only connected with the rest of the country by its airport and the only route offered by commercial flights is to Bogota.

Leticia’s airport, Alfredo Vasquez Cobo (LET), is located in the city’s northern area, not far from the city centre. To get there, you can take a taxi or tuk-tuk for around 10,000 COP ($2.05).

There are two airlines travelling from Leticia to Bogota: Avianca and Latam. Their service is fairly good and pretty similar in terms of quality. Airfares range from 230,000 COP ($48) to 750,000 COP ($155).

Note that this route is in high demand because this is the only way the region is connected with all other cities. It is highly recommended to book some weeks in advance to get the best rates. Prices can double closer to the departure date.

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